Donations and university admissions

Large donations to prestigious universities, so goes the common belief, will help your offspring get places there.

The universities deny this with varying amounts of vigor.

The rumour, though, probably does them no harm at all. If the rumour were mostly baseless, they would be in the best possible position. They can whip up donations with the belief, and not be constrained to live up to their not-quite-promises.

Such is the benefit of being a powerful player in an illegal market, where most of the other participants will only play once, have poor information and jdugment often clouded by emotions.

[vaguely in rsponse to Tyler Cowen, and more indirectly to the New College of the Humanities]

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